Monday, November 14, 2011

From the Inside Out: Best Friends - Benji & Michelle


Sweet Like Sugar follows a 20-something gay man named Benji, who’s alienated from the Jewish traditions he grew up observing. One day, an elderly Orthodox rabbi stumbles into his suburban office, and the two unexpectedly become friends. As they struggle to accept each other, and overcome their preconceptions about one another, each one finds he has much to learn – and much to teach. But while Benji is trying to reconnect with his religious roots, he’s also looking for something equally elusive: a boyfriend. He hasn’t had much luck lately, as his roommate and best friend Michelle can attest.  
 

Michelle: I’ve known you for a long time, Benji – since freshman year of college – and we’ve lived together for five years since we graduated. And in all that time, you’ve never had much luck with the guys you date.
 
Benji: What’re you talking about? I get lucky all the time.
 
Michelle: Very funny. I know about that. Your bedroom is right next to mine! But that’s not what I mean.
 
Benji: I know. And it’s true. I’ve dated a long string of Mister Wrongs. Most of them were very cute, but they weren’t the right ones.
 
Michelle: Why do you think that is? You’re a good catch. You run your own business, you’re smart, you’ve still got all your hair. You shouldn’t have trouble meeting potential boyfriends.
 
Benji: Maybe I’m hanging out in the wrong places.
 
Michelle: Well, it seems like lately, the only place you’re hanging out is with that rabbi who works next to your office.
 
Benji: I’m just driving him home, Michelle. He’s an old man with nobody else to help him, and he can’t walk up that hill anymore. We’re not “hanging out.”
 
Michelle: It’s the longest relationship you’ve had with a man since I’ve known you. And that’s sad.
 
Benji: Have you been talking to my mother? She can’t stand this arrangement either.
 
Michelle: Why? She’s always bugging you to go to synagogue. I think she’d be happy to hear that you’re spending time with a rabbi.
 
Benji: She thinks he’s going to turn me Orthodox. Like I’m going to wake up tomorrow wearing a yarmulke and keeping kosher.
 
Michelle: Good luck with that! I know you pretty damn well, and I know that nothing comes between you and your pepperoni pizza.
 
Benji: Very true. But you know, you’re not exactly one to talk about my romantic life. It’s not like you dated a parade of winners yourself. I could make a pretty horrifying list of the guys you went out with in college. And since.
 
Michelle: Yeah, but I’m with Dan now, and all those other guys have been forgotten. Once you find the right one, it doesn’t matter how many bad dates you had to go on first.
 
Benji: Dan is pretty great, I have to admit. I’d be happy to meet a guy like him.
 
Michelle: Well, back off! He’s mine!
 
Benji: You have nothing to worry about.
 
Michelle: What do you mean? Don’t you think he’s cute?

Benji: He’s cute, yes. You know he is.
 
Michelle: So, what is it? He’s not your type?
 
Benji: It doesn’t matter, Michelle. I’m not his type.
_______________________

To read more about Sweet Like Sugar, visit waynehoffmanwriter.com.

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